The Finance Ministry has proposed for holding 24×7 vaccination against Covid in the country for the next couple of months in order to quicken the vaccination coverage, thereby regaining the country’s economic growth momentum. The ministry highlighted that the aim should be to inoculate 70 crore people in the country by the end of September.
The ministry, in its monthly economic report released on Wednesday, said quickening the pace and coverage of vaccination is critical to help India heal and regain the momentum of economic recovery. “If 70 crore people must be vaccinated by September 2021, it is estimated that around 113 crore doses are needed (19 crore for the second dose + 47 crore for two doses),” the report said.
Pointing out that 93 lakh vaccinations are needed per day to achieve herd immunity, the ministry said.
“So, doubling the shifts and possibly vaccinating 24×7 for a couple of months – particularly in August and September when supply is expected to increase significantly – can enable the ambitious, but possible, throughput of 1 crore shots a day.”
The report said that in the deadly second wave of the pandemic, manufacturing and construction are expected to experience a “softer economic shock in the current quarter” since the state-level lockdowns were more adaptive to learnings from the first wave last year.
Continued vigilance in terms of pandemic preparedness, upscaling health spending and health infrastructure, faster rollout of vaccines and vaccination, investing in research and development to guard against possible mutants of the virus, prudent and pre-emptive restrictions, and strict observance of Covid-appropriate behaviour are essential to maintain the delicate balance of lives and livelihoods, it said.
India’s second Covid wave situation has been improving lately with a continuous decline in 7-day average of active cases since May 13, 2021. Data showed that the second wave reached its peak of 7-day average of daily new cases around May 8, with the pace of decline being as fast as the rise.
The daily case positivity rate has plummeted sharply from 24.9 per cent in early May to reach 3.6 per cent as on June 2.
According to the report, India is one of the select few economies that have witnessed positive YoY (Year-on-Year) growth in the last two consecutive quarters.
India’s real GDP is estimated to have grown at 0.5 per cent in Q3 and 1.6 per cent in Q4 of FY 2020-21 leading to an upward revision in annual real GDP growth from (-)8 per cent (2nd Advance Estimates) to (-)7.3 per cent in FY 2020-21, it said.
(With inputs from PTI)